I had a fighting battle recently with BBA in my 2ft tank and I know many of hobbyists out there might suffer the same thing one day. Hence, I would like to share my own experience fighting BBA with you. It would take about 5 weeks for this treatment.
- First step is to remove/cut-off affected parts that have BBA on the plants. You can try to do trimming first to see if the plants can bounce back. If still got affected by BBA, then you can remove the plants totally. You can re-plant some good portions/stems after carefully inspect that no BBA on it, at least by visual checking. I used to remove the whole bunch of Japonica Blyxa from my tank and choose those best one which were not affected by BBA and re-plants and it works.
- Cleaning all of the lily pipes, tubes, surface skimmer…etc. I used to rub some salt on it for disinfection and clean thoroughly with tap water.
- Canister filter to be cleaned thoroughly as well. The white filtration pad to be replaced with new one, bio-media filter media to be rinsed with tank water, pump impellers to be clean to maximize the filter performance.
- Cut down the intensity of lighting that you got (if possible) or reduce the lighting time. I used to dim the light by 2 steps (Chihiros A series) and cut down the lighting time from 8 to 7 hours a day. This is very important to minimize the chance for BBA to dominate your tank again.
- For the first week after the above cleaning steps, do water change 2-3 times a week, every time 50%.
- For the next 4 weeks, water change once a week as normal, every time 50%. I used AlgExit from EasyLife after each water change (5ml for my 2ft tank, 64 litters).
- During this treatment time, just observe if you see any BBA, just remove it by cleaning the equipment or remove the affected leaves/plants.
I also bought 1-2 S.A.E. fish for BBA treatment, they really done their job very well. They keep the BBA and also other algae in check. Very hardworking algae crew.
After 5 weeks treatment as such, BBA was under control in my tank.
I find the cause of BBA in my tank during the time CO2 had been running out, together with the change in lighting. So just make sure that the CO2 is always suffice and lighting don’t change drastically in intensity/duration. In this battle, less light and more CO2 would be better. For fertilizer, I just dose in everything as normal: Seachem Potassium, Iron, Flourish, Excel, Nitrate, Phosphate and Trace.
The above was written base on my observation in my tank and it was done successfully.
All the best and hope you can beat the BBA successfully!